This makes for a quick and easy dinner, using one skillet (or wok), and just involves a bit of chopping. As always, please please, taste your marinade before adding cornstarch. If you don’t smack your lips and say yum yum, try adjusting. Maybe you like it spicier? – add chile flakes. Maybe you like it more tart? – add lime. Any dish that has Thai in the title should be well balanced, with salty, sweet, spicy & sour in perfect harmony. Once you get that perfect balance add the corn starch.
1 lb boneless pork loin, cut into strips
4 tablespoons hoisin sauce
4 tablespoons soya sauce (reduced sodium)
4 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice
1 tablespoon honey
1 1⁄2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 1⁄2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
8 ounces rice noodles
2 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided use
carrot, sliced 1/8 inch thick
1 sweet red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
bamboo shoots (optional)
water chestnuts (optional)
Realistically – – – all the vegetables are optional, use whatever you like, just make sure you have a good assortment of color and crunch.
Combine hoisin sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, cornstarch, sesame oil and red pepper flakes. Remove enough just to cover pork and place in bowl.
Add pork, marinate while preparing pasta and vegetables or up to overnight.
Cook (or soak) rice noodles according to package directions, drain.
Heat 1 tsp oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Saute garlic & ginger for 1-2 minutes.
Add vegetables and saute until crisp-tender (about 5 minutes).
Remove vegetables from skillet and keep warm.
Add remaining oil and pork mixture to skillet. Cook until pork is nicely browned.
Remove pork, keep warm and stir in remaining marinade to skillet. Cook until bubbly so the cornstarch is cooked through and thickens.
Return pork & vegetables to skillet, add rice noodles, heat through and serve.
Garnishes: sliced green onions, toasted and chopped peanuts and roughly chopped cilantro.
This dish works equally well if you want to make it a vegetarian dish, or decide to change up the protein, try:
sliced chicken thighs
We like rice noodles, but you could easily use any type of pasta you have on hand like chinese egg noodles or spaghetti noodles.
The first thing you need to know is that this sauce is A M A Z I N G. Put it on your sandwich, toss hot pasta with it, fresh veggie dip or meat skewer dip …. it wins every time. Today’s appetizer included these grilled cauliflower florets, lightly marinated shrimp and green onions.
Ingredients for Romesco
1 1/2 CUPS SERVINGS
1 large roasted red bell pepper from a jar
1 garlic clove, smashed
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/4 cup tomato purée
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pulse first 8 ingredients in a food processor until very finely chopped. With motor running, slowly add oil; process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Romesco can be made 1 week ahead. Cover and chill.
To use as a dipping sauce, heat through until easy to stir and warm.
Shrimp and Vegetables
1 head of cauliflower – cut into florets
1/4 tsp salt
1 lb jumbo shrimp – tails and shells on
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp lime juice
1 bunch green onions
Lightly steam cauliflower until just tender crisp – be careful not too overcook it.
Season with salt.
In a large bowl, toss shrimp with vegetable oil and lime juice. Allow to sit for 20-30 minutes.
Grill cauliflower, shrimp and green onions just until heated through (and shrimp is fully cooked) – try to get some pretty grill marks on there!
Arrange on a serving platter with the Romesco and dip merrily away.
I don’t know if any dinner featuring the tastes of Mexico would be complete without this dish … in Mexico it is often found sitting on tables just waiting for you to nibble.
This keeps for weeks in your fridge and is a great accompaniment to sandwiches or burgers and always perfect for tacos.
Like many pickled recipes, this is just a guide. Use whatever vegetables are fresh and ready at hand. Today’s version included garden fresh cauliflower, zucchini, green & yellow beans, carrots and sweet Walla Walla onions. Prepare vegetables in bite size portions, i.e., cauliflower florets, wedges of zucchini, carrots sliced on diagonal … you get the idea. I like to prepare everything ahead of time, and have them ready on the cutting board so I can see the colours and shapes together to make sure it is a pretty picture. (yep, I’m that weirdo) If you like a bit of spicy kick, slice up a jalapeño or two as well.
Start by heating up some good olive oil, (a generous portion – more than you would normally use to sauce) sauté onions until soft. Add garlic, carrot, and any veg you think might take a while to soften. You are only looking for crisp tender as your finished product, not soft and overcooked veg.
2 1/2 cups white vinegar
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp peppercorns
1 tbsp dried mexican oregano
4 bay leaves
Simmer just until heated through and remove from heat. Store in glass jar (or non reactive container) in the fridge for weeks!
I always think of a ratatouille as a long stewed vegetable dish. When the summer vegetables are at their peak, or even just starting to wane -that flavour is fresh and delicious.
Tonight’s version included;
1/2 cup sliced onion
2 garlic cloves
1 cup each chopped zucchini, cauliflower, eggplant and tomato
2 tbsp tomato paste
salt and pepper to taste
Saute onion in olive oil until well softened and starting to turn a golden colour. Add zucchini, cauliflower, and eggplant. Saute until vegetables are starting to soften – move vegetables over to the side and in a little hot spot add a wee bit more oil, along with the garlic and tomato paste. Allow tomato paste and garlic to cook a bit, then stir into the vegetables. Add basil, salt and pepper.
This works really well all year long in a hot oven, and even better on a grilling basket on your barbecue.
Preheat oven to 400. Use any assortment you like of vegetables, I usually try to go for color and cut the items so they cook at about the same rate – i.e., onions, broccoli and cauliflower take a little longer to cook so either cut them smaller or put them in the oven first, adding the peppers, zucchini and tomato after the first 15 min of cooking time.
Once you have all your vegetables prepped, toss in a generous amount of really good quality extra virgin olive oil, a couple cloves of crushed garlic and a good handful of fresh herbs. Season with salt and pepper.
Turn vegetables out of oil seasoning onto roasting surface. Reserve bowl that the oil and seasonings are in.
Roast until just tender and little brown carmelized bits appear. Anywhere from 30-45 minutes.Toss again into the olive oil, seasoning mix just to brighten up the flavours a bit – taste for seasonings and dust with freshly ground pepper and salt to taste.
One of the best ways to enjoy fresh seasonal vegetables is to grill them – often just right on the grilling surface and don’t mess around with them too much!
Let the fresh flavour speak for itself.
Zucchini likes to be brushed with a little olive oil, and sprinkled with sea salt and freshly ground pepper – while tomatoes like just a little olive oil and save the seasoning for after they come off the grill.
Cauliflower can get a little tough on the grill so I like to steam it a bit first, until almost cooked. Toss with a little olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice to keep that bright whiteness, and season with bit of salt and pepper.
Asparagus is happier if you just grill it right on the cooking surface naked … then dress it up with a drizzle of your best olive oil, a squeeze of fresh lemon, season with salt and pepper. Added flavour punch comes from occasionally treating it to a bit of freshly grated Parmesan and/or toasted nuts.